Tablet 609

description

Inv.no.91.1091. (a) 42 x 65 mm. (b) 60 x 30 mm. Birley and Birley (2003), no.3, Plate XXVI ((a) only). Plate 8.
Archaeological data. Location: N. Period: 2.
The tablet consists of two leaves each broken into several pieces. The ed.pr. of fragment (a) (Birley and Birley (2003), no.3) makes no reference to fragment (b). It seems certain that the leaves were part of a single diptych containing an account written in two columns across the grain and parallel to the short edge of the leaf, with fragment (a) being the upper part of the diptych and fragment (b) the lower. If we have placed the fragments correctly, the format of the account will differ from the usual arrangement in which there is a single column written down the length of the diptych. Here we have writing in two parallel columns written across the grain, with column i beginning on the upper half (a) and ending on the lower half (b) and column ii being at the right on the upper half (a) only. The placing of the small fragment as the lower left part of (a) appears to be correct and, if so, the diptych is not complete at any margin. The back of (a) is blank. There are two lines, which are difficult to interpret, on the back of (b), in large letters written along the grain, most of them in capital form.
The text is clearly an account of some sort, with small payments preserved at the right-hand end of the lines in column i (perhaps names with sums owed, cf. 181.10-15) and names only preserved in column ii. The back may contain the name of the person whose account or transactions are recorded on the front or it may be the name of a person to whom the account or list was sent (see note). On archaeological grounds the tablet was originally assigned to Period 4 (cf. VRR II, 58). It was subsequently reassigned to Period 2 in which the Ninth Cohort of Batavians may have been at Vindolanda; it is therefore possible that the people named in column ii were members of that cohort, but there may well have been other units or parts of units, the Third Cohort of Batavians and/or the First Cohort of Tungrians, present at the same time (see Tab.Vindol.II, pp.22-4, and note to line ii.14, below).

edition

i: a:
. . . . . . . .
] ... n
] (denarios) iị s(emis)
] s (denarios) ii s(emis)
] (denarii) s(emis)
5 ]us (denarium) i
] ṃallus ạḷu. n
] ụs (denarios) ii n
b:
] . x n
]ia .
. . . . . . . .
a: ii:
. . . . . . . .
] . s . o [ n
...ariạ [ n
Frisṣi . [ n
Suasṣo [ n
5 Germanụ[s]
Ca.usṣa [ n
Marceḷḷinụ[s] n
Modius [
Senecio [ n
10 Sactius [ n
Viator [
Crescens C̣ir[ n
Crenscens .[ n
Leubius [ n
15 1 Varịenus [ n
n b.back:
. . . . . . . .
traces (?)
VẸ.RVỊNỊ .. [
ṂẠṚT .. [.] . [
. . . . . . . .

commentary

a.i.1. Contrary to what is said in the ed.pr. there are traces of ink above the first legible line of writing.

a.i.6. There are traces at the right after u which may be ink. Perhaps ạḷuṃ (although the form of l would be different from that in mallus), or ṇuṃ or even ṛịuṃ at the end. But none of these is very suggestive. We have considered the possibility that we might have a name, followed by a Luguualio, for example, but we would then have to suppose that the entry ran over into the next line. The suggestion in the ed.pr. is that alu represents al(a) V(ocontiorum) followed by of(ficio), written between the lines. We do not think that the latter marks are in fact ink. Nor do we think there is any support for the former, even if there are not further letters after ạḷu; the alleged presence of the Vocontii in the region, based on 316 is very uncertain. The name Mallus (A.R.Birley (2001a), 246) is unlikely; a longer name ending –mallus is more probable and the ed.pr. lists several possibilities.

a.i.7. ]is: ed.pr.

b.i.1. The trace before x may well be a denarius symbol. a.

a.ii.1. ]sto: ed.pr. The penultimate letter could equally well be and Pr]ịsc̣o is a possibility. There is a blank space following so this must be the end of the name (so also in line 4) and it would have to be a nominative; we can find no attestation of it (NPEL offers Prisso and Priscio). Of names ending in –sto and –sco in RNGCL only C]ạsc̣o is possible (Aprusco is too long and Festo too short). Other possibilities are listed in the ed.pr. There is a possible trace from a previous line, or perhaps remains of an apex over o.

a.ii.2. c.riaras[: ed.pr. The first letter is most like c or p (citations in NPEL include Cavarianus but we do not feel able to suggest that this could be read).

a.ii.3. Frissia[ ]: ed.pr., but the last trace does not look compatible with . Frisius and Frisenius are attested as gentilicia (NPEL), see CIL III 1771. Since the last trace compares quite well with the form of u in Sactius (line 10), we suggest reading Frisṣiụ[s or Frisc̣iụ[s, the latter attested in CIL VI 18594 as a gentilicium; A.R.Birley (2001a), 246 has Frissia[us].

a.ii.4. Suasco: ed.pr., noting that Suasso is also possible; we agree that both can be read. Names with the sua- element are reasonably well attested in Belgica/Germany (perhaps cf. Suolcenus in 648). A Iulia Suausia is attested in CIL XIII 7678.

a.ii.6. Catussa: ed.pr. The third letter is i, p or t, followed by uss or usc. Catussa is attested in Noricum and Lugdunensis, Cattusus in Belgica/Germany (see NPEL). If the third letter were read as i we could read Caịus Ṣa[, but this would be the only instance of a praenomen in the text and should perhaps be ruled out on those grounds.

a.ii.7. ..dr.elun.[ ]: ed.pr.; in the proposed reading Marceḷḷinụ[s only the second l is dubious.

a.ii.9. For a name beginning Sene- at Vindolanda see 188.2.

a.ii.10. No doubt a form of Sanctius, as stated in ed.pr.; cf. Masuetus in 187.ii.2.

a.ii.12. Crenscens Gir[: ed.pr.; the first name is a misprint; there is no tail on the first letter of the three following. In view of the need to distinguish between this Crescens and the one in the following line, we presumably have some further means of identification for each of them, perhaps a patronymic (or a function); there are a number of names beginning with these letters (e.g. Cirro, LC 223, which might be Celtic). Cf. 607.b.3 note.

a.ii.13. Crenscens I[: ed.pr. For the form of the name cf. ILS 5533. For the last trace, n, p, t and s are also possible.

a.ii.14. Leubius: apart from 594.a.7, where it is probable, we can find the name attested only once, Leubius Claupi f., a veteran of the ala Sebosiana, CIL XIII 11709, an undated dedication from Borbetomagus (Worms) where the unit was stationed in the Julio-Claudian period. It probably came to Britain with Petilius Cerialis and it now seems probable that its station in the Flavian period was Carlisle (see Tab.Luguval.44). It is attested on the diploma of AD 103, RIB 2401.1 (station unknown) and there is a reference to it in one of the letters from Vindolanda (671). It is perhaps not impossible that this is the same man but in order to explain the presence of the dedication we would have to suppose that he was recruited in the area of Worms in the 60s and returned home after his discharge. The strategic importance of Carlisle might suggest that the ala is likely to have remained there in the post-Agricola period but we should not exclude the possibility that individuals from it might appear on an account from Vindolanda since detachments of troops evidently moved away from their home base. For the origin of names with Leub-, see in the note in the ed.pr.

a.ii.15. Varcenus: ed.pr. (listed as such in A.R.Birley (2001a), 246). The reading is possible but this name is not attested, whereas Varienus is known in Italy (NPEL).

b.back. Three other accounts have ratio on the back, in two cases followed by a personal name (192, 207 (restored), 608). 609 is broken at the point at which the word ratio might have been written (we are unsure whether there are traces of the feet of letters at the broken edge). If ratio was written, line 2 is likely to have contained a personal name. What survives would fit Vẹṛruịnị (though the two examples of r would in that case be made differently) and the name Veruinius is attested as a gentilicium in Narbonensis (NPEL, see CIL XI 1680). There are traces after this of the foot or feet of one or two letters and the amount lost at the right is wholly uncertain. If Verruini is right, the traces after it might be the start of the cognomen. We might have a second name in line 3, possibly Ṃạṛtịạ[li]ṣ. But it should be stressed that the first two letters in this line could equally well be read as ạṃ; there is a trace of a vertical after this which may be ink (i?); , if correct, must have been made in the capital form, which is not true in line 2; and it is difficult to read the letter after t as . We have also considered the possibility of reading ṃạṛtịạṣ, as part of a date but we have no parallels for a date on the back of an account.

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